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Alastair Campbell – Coping with Confidence

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Alastair Campbell, former Spokesman, Press Secretary and Director of Communications and Strategy for Tony Blair, joins the Humourology Podcast to share insights from his new book But What Can I Do? and highlights from his podcast The Rest is Politics with Rory Stewart. Join Alastair Campbell and Paul Boross for an insightful discussion on humour, politics, and how to turn a passion for people into a career in politics.

Alastair has created a career on crafting the perfect public persona for politicians as well as himself. He knows what it takes to captivate crowds and move people to action. When delivering an address or after dinner speech, Alastair says to feed off the nervous feeling in your gut. He says that you will perform better on stage if you feel butterflies in your stomach. Embrace your nervousness and perform at your best on stage.

Coping with Confidence

Alastair Campbell knows a thing or two about politics, power, and the perfect time to throw a punchline. As Tony Blair’s Spokesman, Press Secretary and Director of Communications and Strategy, Campbell is a proven expert in politics and leadership alike. His new book, But What Can I Do?  offers readers a road map on how to turn your passion into a career in politics. The book is a masterclass in political thought and the psychology of communication.

But What Can I Do? Is the perfect mix of political insight, self-help advice, and psychological deep dive. Campbell not only provides a step-by-step approach to get involved in politics, he presents the perfect framework for improving your overall communication and leadership abilities. From resisting cynicism to building confidence, Campbell has cultivated a collection of fantastic advice for anyone looking to improve their life. Most importantly, the book gives everyone the tools to turn your passion into action.

In addition to his excellent new book, Alastair spends his time as the host of the podcast, “The Rest is Politics” with Rory Stewart. The show provides a plethora of insightful commentary on current events and politics alongside heated debates and friendly banter between Alastair and Rory. Speaking of friendly banter, Alastair was nice enough to share with us an exclusive video of Rory channelling his inner Max Miller and dancing at The London Palladium.

Campbell’s career has been built on his ability to communicate and overcome adversity. From his time with Tony Blair to his current written work and podcasts, Campbell is a proven expert in both political commentary and interpersonal communication. For Campbell, Persevering and staying resilient to change can be the most valuable things in leadership.

“Perseverance is about keeping going when things are tough. And resilience is how you deal with failure and setback and how you build back from it.”

Campbell feels so strongly about perseverance and resilience that he has created his own word: Persivilience. In his new book, But What Can I Do? Alastair Campbell says that Persivilience is the key to success in politics and life. Persivilience is the combination of perseverance and resilience and is sure to get you through your toughest times. Whether in politics, business, or life, showing a little persivilience will power you through.

In addition to persivilience, Alastair is a firm believer in the power of confidence. When connecting with crowds on his podcast or during a public address, Campbell knows that confidence is the key. He also says that confidence on stage or in a talk can be a learned skill that is achievable by everyone. A skill that he himself teaches in his new book.

“There has to be a deeper energy to it, there has to be a deeper sense of connection with the audience. And a lot of that is technique that can be learned.”

Confidence may have also been the key to Alastair’s beloved Burnley FC in their promotion back into the Premier League. According to Alastair, nothing can teach you perseverance or how to ignore cynicism like football (especially as a Burnley Supporter).

But what can I do? coverJoin us this week for another fantastic chat with Alastair Campbell. Learn how confidence and persivilience can improve your public speaking, leadership ability, and overall life. Hear how Alastair’s new book But What Can I Do? can help you turn a passion for people into political action while also improving your overall communication skills. Listen in for another unforgettable and invaluable conversation with Alastair Campbell, only on the Humourology podcast.

But What Can I Do? Is available at all good bookshops. You can find it Here

You can find out more about Alastair on his website


It was brilliant to have the ever shy and retiring Alastair back on the show. I genuinely hope that I managed to bring him out of his shell!
Seriously, it is always a great pleasure to lock horns and laugh with a Master of Communication and comedy.

I read his new book in one day, and I have to say I absolutely loved it. The book half explanation of what’s gone wrong in recent times: polarisation, popularisation, fatigue, disengagement. And then in the second half, it gently ventures into a little self-help. but fundamentally it’s a primer about using Alastair’s experience in campaigning and strategy and communications. The final part finishes with some super practical advice about how to get involved in politics, whether you want to be a grassroots campaign or in your community, or if you someday want to be Prime Minister. It is a hugely compelling and entertaining read and intriguing and useful to anyone who wants to get on in politics or life.

If you enjoy the interview, please take a moment to like, subscribe and leave a review wherever you get your podcasts.

See you next Tuesday.


Paul x

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